pisto manchego

Back to Spain

Pisto manchego: a classic Spanish dish that brings me back to my school days — not my student days, but when I moved to Spain to be an English teacher. At CEIP Maria Moliner, a public school in the San Blas neighborhood of Madrid, I learned that Spanish school lunch no tiene nada que ver con (has no relation to) American school lunch.


My memories of school lunches, back when I was a tiny tot, consist of chicken nuggets (okay), chicken patties (also okay), cheeseburgers (kind of okay, notwithstanding that the burgers didn’t look or taste like actual meat), pizza (good, particularly for the Ellio’s fan), and fish patties (the worst of days). Usually with French fries, occasionally with tater tots, and always served on Styrofoam trays. There was very little flatware involved.

At Maria Moliner, lunch for students and teachers alike was a proper meal —generally three courses that required…

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